Have you ever gotten the overwhelming urge to just clean? Be it your house, your workspace or your body, something comes over you and you can no longer ignore the feeling. Have you considered that could be your intuition picking up on forces beyond the physical clutter of your space? That maybe your mind, body or space is also being affected by negative energy that breeds in the chaos of clutter and stress.

Lately my puppers has been revisiting his glory days of rummaging through the trash cans when we aren't looking. This isn't a new hobby, though it's been so long since his last raid that it took me by surprise when he did it not once, but three times last week. An old habit resurfacing, or a lesson in disguise?

Lo and behold, shortly after these outbursts I stumble across this advice: keep garage cans out of sight in order to improve your home's energy flow and feng shui. After all, isn't a messy pile of discarded, broken, and unwanted things nothing but a beacon for more of the same?

Apparently it was enough to attract the darker desires of my doggie, who kept coming back regardless of how much I scolded him or how long I put him in time out. So I decided it was well past time to find a lid to keep the curiosity out and the bad vibes in. Then, for good measure, I put a clear quartz crystal in the bottom of the bin, charged with the intention to cleanse any negative energy that was added. Two birds, one stone.

What else holds negative energy?

Negative energy can attach itself to just about anything: people, places, things... Basically everything has the potential to harbor energy, good or bad. Just like people, objects and places need to be cleaned from time to time, both physically and energetically. This is especially true for spaces we spend a lot of time in and tools we use frequently.

As much as we would love to be able to shower once and remain forever clean, the fact is that as we move throughout our day we are constantly accumulating physical grime as well as energetic grime. We exchange energy with everything we interact with, causing both ourselves and our possessions to carry a complex energetic load. Just consider how much energy passes through our smart phones, objects from our hobbies, or even our beds! As a rule of thumb, the more time, energy and emotion we put into things, the more often they need energetic cleansing.

This is why it is so important to regularly cleanse yourself, your home, and your items from negative energy to ensure you are giving and receiving a higher vibrational experience the next time to interact with them - or at the very least a clean slate, if you will.

What do I need to cleanse negative energy?

If you've looked into cleansing before, you've probably come across popular buzzwords like sage and smudging. The problem with these suggestions is not only that they are inaccessible to most people (especially considering white sage is endangered and smudging is part of a closed practice), but it suggests that you have to buy into the practice in order to cleanse and protect yourself. Unfortunately, fear sells, and I see way too many people buying into this toxic mindset. In fact, I fell for it right off the bat.

When I first started my journey into the craft, I was definitely operating from a scarcity mindset. I wasn't really sure what I needed and what I didn't, and in order to combat this fear of uncertainty, I found myself buying more in hopes of feeling more prepared. It quickly led me down an endless rabbit hole of more herbs, more crystals, more candles... I was buying everything I came across, just to have it in case I one day needed it.

The reality of the matter is I didn't even start practicing the craft until I had almost a year of research under my belt. And in hindsight, I probably won't use half the things I bought for many years to come. So a little piece of advice to any new witches facing the same fears that I did:

It's not about what you have, but what you do.

While there is a plethora of cleansing apparatus available for you to purchase, I want to start from the ground up, (literally), and share a variety of magickal methods related to the four elements, starting with Earth in this post. The wonderful thing about starting with the element of the North is that many of it's manifestations are things you can easily find inside (or outside) your own home. So without further ado, cue the witchy scavenger hunt!

How to cleanse with the element of Earth

All life on this planet stems from the Earth itself, or Mother Gaia (as she's been called since the Greeks named her so and the pagans continued to worship her). Earth plays an imperative role in the life of a witch, as we tend to call upon her for all our materialistic desires. She provides comforts and connections, structures and stability, provisions and professions. Since Earth has been tending to our physical needs, known and unknown, since the dawn of time, it would make sense that she has always provided a variety of tools we need to cleanse - both physically and metaphysically.

Nature itself is a very purifying, clean and natural environment when left undisturbed. This is because the Earth is capable of balancing any unnatural influxes of negativity and restoring peace and harmony. For this reason, many people advocate the healing nature of grounding, the act of interacting with nature and exchanging energy in the process.

Grounding it quite simple in nature, only requiring your body and some connection to nature, be that a plant in your room, a tree in a park, or the dirt on the ground. By physically touching the leaves or the bark of these plants, or walking barefoot across the earthy ground, you are connecting to another life force energy, one that is literally rooted and grounded to Earth energy. You enter into a symbiotic relationship that is a natural exchange of energy, one which helps ease your burdens and fill you with clean, positive energy.

This give and take relationship is very healing for both you are the Earth, which is quite capable of transmuting negative energy on your behalf if you are having trouble doing so yourself. Just like plants convert the carbon dioxide we exhale into something we can safely breathe again, Mother Earth does the same with toxic energy by cleansing and purifying the energy to be used again.

Just because energy may seem bad to us, that doesn't mean it doesn't serve a purpose and have its place in the world.

In addition to grounding your body, you can also practice this type of cleansing with practically anything else you can bury in the dirt of the Earth. By covering an item in soil, sand, dirt or clay and leaving it submerged for a few days or longer, the concentrated energy it holds is then diffused into the surrounding Earth and dispersed. Simultaneously, it is being charged by the positive energy it absorbs, and experiences something of a energetic metamorphosis in the cocoon of the Earth.

Keep in mind that if you choose to bury the item indoors, in a bottle of sand for example, you will want to either discard or return the sand back to the Earth afterwards. You will not want to reuse the medium as it will retain that negative energy until it has been cleansed itself.

Cleansing your space with salt

Much like using the Earth to bury and purify items, salt can be used to cleanse items and even spaces. Placing something in dry salt (or even salt water) to soak out the impurities is a long standing tradition, and can be used for smaller, salt-safe items like certain crystals, jewelry, or tools.

While this option is very effective at removing all stagnant energy, be mindful that salt can be very corrosive and damaging to certain metals or minerals, so please use caution and do your research before placing your precious items in a bowl of salt.

Ideally you will want to use Himalayan salt for this purpose as it has a greater amount of minerals than your typical table salt, and thus it is actually able to deliver positive energy to your items. For this very reason, you have likely noticed the recent surge of salt lamps available for purchase at most major stores (or here on Amazon).

Aside from being an interesting and trendy decor item, these salt lamps actually claim to assist with a variety of health concerns, like purifying the air, improving sleep quality, boosting your mood and even helping with asthma and allergies. And after looking into the metaphysical properties of salt, I'm not surprised they can do all this and more!

Now I'm not saying you have to run out and buy a salt lamp to cleanse your home, because I know we both know you already have some salt sitting in your cupboard right now... So while it might be a helpful ally in keeping your space clear after cleansing, I would recommend doing a personalized ritual to fully cleanse your space first. As nice as it can be to put items to work for you, sometimes it's more meaningful to do the work for yourself. Tools are only as personal as our intention behind using them, and the more of our own energy we pour into that intention, the more the powerful our magick will be.

An important lesson of witchcraft is learning how to use what you have in a pinch.

So how exactly can you use salt to cleanse? It's actually quite easy!

One option would be to pour the salt in small bowls and place one in each of the four corners of your room or home. Leave these bowls for as long as necessary to help draw the stagnant energy from the air, then thank them before discarding the salt or returning to the Earth once you feel an energetic shift in your space.

Please be mindful of where you discard salt as its chemical makeup can prove to be quite damaging to plant life.

An alternative option would be to mix energetic cleansing in with your mundane cleaning routines. Adding salt to your normal household cleaners, mop buckets, and sanitizing sprays can add some extra oomph to your cleaning - not only energetically, but also physically! Historically, salt has been used for a variety of cleaning tasks, such as lifting stains from clothing and scrubbing stains on dishes.

In addition to adding it to your wash, you can also try this old witch tip: sprinkle a bit of salt on the floor before sweeping or vacuuming. Ideally you'll want to begin your cleaning session with this step so the salt can do the energetic work while you tend to the physical work. By the time you finish tidying up and decluttering your space, the salt will have done the same.

This trick can also be done with cleansing herbs like rosemary or lavender.

If you are looking to be a bit more proactive in your cleansing, you can also consider lining your doorways, windows or property line with salt to form an energetic barrier, much like a traditional salt circle. This helps ensure that any negative energies that may try to enter your home after all your hard work will either be neutralized or repelled.

Bear in mind that this salt will need to be changed on a regular basis to avoid harboring all that negative energy.

Can I cleanse my space with crystals?

Since salt is technically an edible crystal with an array of magickal properties, it would make sense that we can use other crystals to assist us with cleansing too. In fact, just like salt, many clear crystals are actually wonderful for this purpose.

Clear quartz is perhaps the most widely known and used, especially revered for its ability to absorb energy. This makes it a useful tool for collecting negative energy, which it then transmutes into the powerful, positive energy it is known for. For this reason it is often used to cleanse and charge other crystals, making it a must-have staple for any crystal collector (oh, and did I mention it can also take on the properties of any other crystal?)!

Not only will it cleanse your crystals, but it can also cleanse items in close proximity, be used to grid your home (by placing in four corners or entryways), cleanse your aura by wearing or carrying, and also be used in a crystal grid with the intention of cleansing a person, place or thing.

Personally, I like to keep some in my shower to amplify the energetic cleansing of the water and purify my mind, body, and soul. Of course, there's that little piece at the bottom of the waste bin now, too. I also have a sphere that sits on my nightstand to keep the bedroom copacetic and my other crystals' vibes high. Then there's the large cluster I found during my travels that lives on my altar to keep the negative energies at bay.

Because there are literally a million and one uses for clear quartz, I wholeheartedly recommend buying this crystal in bulk, like this set of points on Amazon.

In addition to clear quartz, another purification must-have is the cult classic: selenite. It is actually quite similar to clear quartz in a lot of ways, especially in it's ability to cleanse and charge crystals, spaces, and auras. However, selenite has a distinctly calming and serene energy that is much more subtle than the electric energy of clear quartz. For this reason, its the most widely recommended stone for energetic cleansing and harmonizing your space.

In addition to being able to get selenite charging plates and bowls, you can also use satin spar wands to place throughout your home. While satin spar is not identical to selenite, it is a closely related gypsum mineral that can be used interchangeably. The benefit is you can find them in bulk on Amazon or elsewhere, and they are relatively cheaper. Just keep in mind that many crystal sellers will mislabel satin spar as selenite, either out of ignorance, or because it is the more commonly desired form.

As an alternative (or companion) to salt lamps, you can also find space soothing selenite lamps on Amazon!

Other notable crystals that are recommended for cleansing include amethyst to promote peace and calm, black obsidian to absorb negative energy, and citrine to shine its light on any darkness. Citrine is yet another self-cleansing crystal that will charge and cleanse your favorite tools for you, if you ask it to nicely!

Just remember to be crystal clear with your intentions when programming your crystals, that way they know exactly how to direct their energy to suit your desired outcome.

How do you plan to cleanse with Earth?

Now that we've covered what energetic cleansing is & why we need to do so regularly, which ways of cleansing with the Earth element are you excited to try?

Are you looking forward to walking barefoot on the Earth and cleansing your mind, body and soul by grounding? Or are you excited to bury your favorite ring and feel the energetic difference when you dig it up and clean it off? Maybe you want to practice using salt in your craft and create an energetic barrier around your home, or maybe you prefer the simplicity of vacuuming up toxic energy along with the crumbs on the floor. You might be looking forward to decorating your space with soothing salt lamps and purifying plant life. Or you could be plotting to keeping the negativity out by washing your doors with salt water or hanging a selenite stick above it. Maybe you just want to carry a clear quartz or wear a citrine crystal to keep the bad vibes at bay.

Whatever method of Earth energetic cleansing appeals to you most, I hope you found this guide helpful in identifying some ways that you can use the tools that the Earth has provided for you and start putting them to work for you right now. And hopefully the next time someone says you need to buy something in order to do something, you remember to take it with a grain of salt. No matter the circumstances, you can always cleanse where you are with what you have.

- Blessed be, Wyndoe

Updated: Aug 10, 2021

Hello, and a warm welcome to The Growing Grimoire! I am so grateful your path has brought you here, and I hope you are too. Have you taken a look around the place? I know it's a bit cluttered - alas, so is my mind, my desk, and even my sacred spaces if I'm being honest... But a wise witch once said a messy altar is the sign of a busy witch, and it's in the chaos that the magick thrives.

Speaking of chaos, I hope you come to find that the diversity of information gathered here is reminiscent of that mighty (and flighty) form of magick. While I prefer the label eclectic, (I am an Aquarius after all), there is definitely a healthy dose of spontaneity in everything I do (probably my Sagittarius rising making an appearance). All quirks aside, I have a method to my madness (you can thank my moon in Virgo for that). So while this site may seem like a hodge-podge concoction of bits and bats, there is good reason.

When I was (re)introduced to magick just over a year ago, I immediately drank the potion and fell down the rabbit hole. The further I fell, the deeper it got. I discovered that the fairy tales I had dreamed of as a child were truer than anyone had ever let on, and my world blossomed with the possibilities.

I quickly realized I had to rewrite the script I'd been fed my whole life - that I didn't need a fairy godmother to grant my wishes, a villain to fight indefinitely, or a knight in shining armor to save the day. I learned I could lean on my guides, tap into my power within, and win the war with myself without the need for collateral damage. I saw a path with roots in nature, camaraderie with thy neighbor, and reciprocity with the divine - so I hopped on the first flight.

Turns out this broomstick ride I was on had quite a few unexpected layovers... I quickly found myself stuck at the walls of protection, the four corners of circle-casting, the gates of the wardens, and the cross-hairs of closed practices... (We don't mess with either of those last two here, by the way).

There was so much to learn, and I just couldn't seem to untangle it all in my (read: cluttered) mind. I knew I was to keep a record of it all, but even the thought of organizing those pages - not to mention trying to make them aesthetically pleasing - petrified me. With a constant electrical current of information to pin down, pen and paper just seemed a bit barbaric, to be honest. I wanted to be able to sail through the information like I surf the web...

Then it dawned on me what I needed to do! I had already tried my hand at blogging and learned a lot in the process - especially through the many rookie mistakes I had made. I realized that my prior experience was really just a stepping stone towards my true purpose: to help connect other awakening witches with the information they need to continue the practice. The more I thought about it, the more it became apparent that I had been preparing for this duty my entire life...

Now, I am going to be completely honest with you: I am not a seasoned witch who has been practicing for decades. Nope, not even close. I have been studying witchcraft for approximately one year, practicing for even less. Yes, you read that right - I have barely soiled my cauldron. But with that said, I can whole-heartedly say that I have been a witch my entire life - I just didn't know it yet. Hopefully on that truth we can agree.

Still, you may be wondering why I have suddenly decided to devote myself to teaching others a practice I have barely begun to understand myself? The answer is really simple: I was called to. Just as you and I were stirred from our slumber and awakened to our true, divine selves, my soul was summoned to do my part in helping others awaken to the power that lies dormant within them, and unacknowledged all around them. And while I certainly do not possess more knowledge than the practitioners who have devoted their lives to the craft, I fully intend to.

This is just the beginning of my story, and I have no doubt it's going to be full of some truly magickal experiences. So if you happen to be struggling to take your first baby steps too, I want to extend a hand and take you with me on this journey. I must warn you that we will be taking a long and winding path, but at the very least I can offer you a guide that grows with you.

~ Blessed be, Wyndoe